Isla Vistans and stakeholders will gather in Anisq’ Oyo’ Park to discuss AB 3
Students, Isla Vista residents and I.V. stakeholders will assemble Saturday afternoon from 1 to 3 p.m. at Anisq’ Oyo’ Park to discuss with lawmakers how to fund additional public services for I.V. as part of a continuous effort to craft I.V. self-governance bill AB 3.
The town-hall-style meeting is hosted by the office of California State Assemblyman Das Williams, who introduced AB 3 in December to turn I.V. into a community services district (CSD), a special form of local government that would allow I.V. to levy taxes in order to provide certain public services for the area.
Williams’ office has held weekly meetings with Isla Vistans since early January to discuss the logistics of his bill, and three town-hall-style meetings on preferred forms of self-governance have taken place since the Deltopia riots last April.
Santa Barbara City College trustee and UCSB alumnus Jonathan Abboud said while residents have considered at past meetings which services are the most necessary in I.V., — such as lighting, parking and law enforcement — the goal of Saturday’s meeting is to discuss how an I.V. CSD will generate revenue.
“It’s not about taxes, strictly,” Abboud said. “It’s really focused on how we are going to pay for the services.”
Associated Students Executive Vice President of Local Affairs (EVPLA) Cameron Schunk said he hopes the new talks will encourage more people to attend future stakeholder meetings and become more involved in the self-governance movement.
“I think as people start to realize, ‘Oh, they’re talking about paying for things,’ they’ll start to say, ‘Hey, that’s something that I should be talking about as well,’” Schunk said.
Second-year history of public policy major Ashcon Minoiefar and EVPLA chief of staff said he would like to have more students living in I.V. represented at the town hall meetings.
“I mean if you ask me personally, I want to see a little more students … the amount of students that are here … [reflect] a lot of diversity and opinions,” Minoiefar said. “We’re trying to get everyone from all different portions of Isla Vista.”
Schunk said he wants I.V. to physically remain familiar, but to have improved resident autonomy and governance.
“I want parents to come back and say, ‘Oh, it’s exactly how I remember it,’ and then, ‘Oh, you added this!’ and, ‘Oh, you do this now?’” Schunk said. ‘‘I want I.V. to feel the same but run more smoothly behind the scenes. That’s my endgame.”
According to Minoiefar, all individuals invested in the I.V. community are invited to participate in town hall meetings.
“Eventually, everyone who will be here will always have this government to help us aid them,” Minoeifar said. “So, just because you’re not going to be here when you graduate doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be here. It’s very much connected to everyone here.”
A version of this story appeared on page 4 of the February 19, 2015 print version of the Daily Nexus.